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    Decode Jay-Z with Bing

    Microsoft wanted its agency, Droga5, to help leverage the usage of the Bing search engine. To expand the search reach, Bing needed to become more culturally relevant and appeal to a younger audience. The launch of Jay-Z’s autobiography ‘Decoded’ was used to do this. The book’s 350 pages were individually placed in a plethora of different locations, over 13 cities all around the world. The chosen location for each page was contextually relevant to the page itself, meaning that you could literally walk through the life of Jay-Z. But the location of each page could only be found by using Bing search and maps.

    For the ‘Decode Jay-Z with Bing’ campaign agency Droga5 won both the Outdoor and Titanium and Integrated Grand Prix at Cannes Lions 2011.

    “We loved its bravery, its boldness, its innovation,” commented Cannes Lions’ Titanium and Integrated Jury President Bob Scarpelli, chairman of DDB Worldwide. “It’s immersive. It’s interactive. It’s creating conversations with customers. It gave millions a reason to use Bing. They put every page of Jay-Z’s new autobiography out in the world every day for a month in 13 major cities in the world. Fans could walk through J-Z’s life.”

    The unique partnership brought Bing to the forefront of pop-culture and gave millions of Jay-Z fans a reason to use Bing Search and Maps.

    The results, except from winning the Grand Prix for Outdoor as well as Titanium and Integrated at Cannes Lions 2011:

    • The average online player engagement was over 11 minutes per visit.
    • Jay-Z’s Facebook fans grew by one million during the campaign launch.
    • Decoded went straight to the New York Times Best Seller list at #2 its first week.
    • Bing.com saw an 11.7% increase in visits the month of the campaign (Bing’s only form of marketing during this period).
    • Bing.com entered the top ten most visited sites in the US.
    • Bing earned 1.1 billion global media impressions.
    • Bing’s ‘intent to use’ scores were higher than any other Bing marketing initiative ever according to ComScore. Online Buzz and Social metrics were above average for any Bing marketing program according to Nielsen BuzzMetrics.

    This project is truly an excellent example of how music branding can work when done correctly.

    Read more about the case and other Cannes Lions winners here.